Erickson Living Tribune

Posted on: Sunday July 15, 2012

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Amanda Smith in The Wall Street Journal

Posted on: Sunday April 22, 2012

Five Books: Amanda Smith     The Colonel By Richard Norton Smith (1997)   It remains a matter of debate whether Robert R. McCormick succeeded in making his Chicago Tribune the “World’s Greatest Newspaper” that it proclaimed itself to be. What’s certain is that by World War II, under nearly three decades of his reactionary, … [Read more]

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Library of Congress Event

Posted on: Wednesday February 29, 2012

News from the Library of Congress   Amanda Smith will discuss her Patterson biography, “Newspaper Titan: The Infamous Life and Monumental Times of Cissy Patterson” (Knopf Doubleday, 2011), on Thursday, March 15, at noon in the Montpelier Room, located on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. The event, part … [Read more]

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The Browser > FiveBooks Interviews

Posted on: Monday January 16, 2012

Amanda Smith on Newspaper Dynasties   Amanda was interviewed by Eve Gerber for The Browser From the Hearsts to the Murdochs, powerful families have often controlled the newspapers we read. The author, and Kennedy family member, tells us why they do it and where it leads Newspaper dynasties are the subject of the five books we’re … [Read more]

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Amanda Smith will be on MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews TBA

Posted on: Tuesday December 27, 2011

           

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Part 3: “Stars Don’t Fall”: Felicia G., Marty Mann, and Other Women of the Early Alcoholics Anonymous Movement

Posted on: Wednesday November 2, 2011

Patterson Home, Dupont Circle

Patterson Home, Dupont Circle

In 1943, Countess Felicia Gizycka severed relations with her mother, the notorious Washington, DC, newspaper publisher and Chicago Tribune heiress, Cissy Patterson, in what would prove to be the last of the many vicious “drunken rows” they had engaged in over the previous twenty years. Several months later, through her psychiatrist Dr. Florence Powerdermaker, Felicia was introduced to “Bill W.” and his small, but growing fellowship, Alcoholics Anonymous, in New York City. For the first time in her life Felicia experienced a sense of community and belonging. In her sponsor, Marty Mann, Felicia had found a stalwart lifelong friend. By the end of the Second World War, Felicia had committed herself to a life in recovery.

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Part 2: “Stars Don’t Fall”: Felicia G., Marty Mann, and Other Women of the Early Alcoholics Anonymous Movement

Posted on: Friday October 28, 2011

Felicia

Felicia, herself genteel and well-groomed

“I’ve got a dame here with a name I can’t pronounce,” Bill W. told someone whose number he dialed on Felicia G.’s behalf at the end of the first Alcoholics Anonymous meeting she ever attended, in Hell’s Kitchen in 1943. When he hung up, he told her he had arranged for her to meet someone named Marty. “Aha, he’s passing the buck,” Felicia, who had come largely to humor her psychiatrist, suspected inwardly. “Now comes the questionnaire.”

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Part 1: “Stars Don’t Fall”: Felicia G., Marty Mann, and Other Women of the Early Alcoholics Anonymous Movement

Posted on: Wednesday October 26, 2011

Bill Wilson

Bill W: "He wasn't a quack or a fanatic."

In 1943, at the age of thirty-eight, Countess Felicia Gizycka “divorced” her mother, the notorious Washington, DC, newspaper publisher and Chicago Tribune heiress, Cissy Patterson. Falling into old habits on that decisive wartime evening during one of Felicia’s rare visits home, mother and daughter left the dinner table “in the middle of the night, both of us drunk as skunks,” to continue drinking and bickering in the living room. When Cissy began toying with Felicia by proposing to favor others in her will, and taunting her daughter for her personal failings as she had done many times over the years, Felicia finally exploded. “God damn you and may you roast in Hell. If there is a Hell. You’ve already made my life one long Hell from the time I was a baby, you stupid bitch! . . . And you can take all your Goddamn fucking money and stuff it!”

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